4.1 Creation

The Creation of All Things

In the beginning it pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, from nothing, to speak into existence the universe and everything in it, whether visible or invisible. God created the angels, assigning their various ranks and functions. There was nothing before him, and without him nothing came into existence. God created the universe and everything in it in six days. On the sixth day, after he had made man, God viewed everything that he had made and said that it was very good. Genesis 1:1-2:25, Hebrews 1:2, John 1:1-3, Job 33:4, Colossians 1:15-20

The Uniqueness of Man

After God had made all other creatures, he created man, male and female, with reasoning and immortal souls. Man was created in the image of God, a rational and moral being. Man was assigned to populate and have dominion over the earth as stewards. Genesis 1:1-28, Romans 1:28-31, Romans 2:12-16, Colossians 3:10, Ephesians 4:24

The Nature of Man

Adam and Eve were created innocent and inclined to do good. They were not outwardly forced to obey God, but they obeyed willingly. God provided for their every need and pleasure. They were given only one restriction: they were not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Genesis 1:26-2:25

4.2 God’s Providence

Meaning of Providence

God, who makes every creature for his own good pleasure, did not merely decree what should be, and then retire to heaven to watch what inevitably must come to pass in his universe. Rather, in his infinite wisdom and power, he controls all second causes (cause and effect events), upholding and governing all creatures and circumstances, making all things work together for the accomplishing of his own eternal plan. This invisible governing hand of God is called his providence. Colossians 1:16, Daniel 4:28-35, Romans 8:28, Ephesians 1:11

Second Causes

God’s eternal decree, unchangeably decided before the world began, is the first cause of everything that happens in the universe. Nothing is left to chance, nor happens apart from his providence. His wise providence is brought about by the use of second causes (cause and effect events). The answer to the question, “What caused you to become a believer?” is two-fold. The first cause is God’s sovereign choice. The second cause is whatever he used in your experience to bring you to himself. Acts 4:27-28, Genesis 50:19-21, Ephesians 1:11


A miracle is an event where God uses extraordinary means to cause something to happen. Examples of miracles are the virgin birth and the long day of Joshua. Luke 1:26-38, Joshua 10:1-15

The Problem of Evil

God’s providence is all-inclusive. Although God can never be the author of sin or evil, his invisible hand is behind the rebellion of Satan, the temptation in the Garden of Eden, the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, and all other evil acts. He determined before the creation of the world to use everything, even the acts of evil men, in his eternal plan. The wicked are fully responsible for what they do. God cannot be blamed. Acts 4:27-28, Genesis 50:19-20, Proverbs 16:4, Romans 9:10-21, Romans 11:33-36, 1 John 1:5

4.3 The Fall of Man

The Temptation

The Lord God, in the Garden of Eden, gave Adam and Eve the command not to eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil or they would die. The woman was deceived by Satan and ate the fruit of the forbidden tree. She then gave some of the fruit to Adam and he willingly ate it. This first sin of Adam and Eve was part of God’s wise plan. Genesis 2:15-17, Genesis 3:1-7, Romans 5:12-21, 1 Corinthians 15:20-28

The Consequences

As a result of eating the forbidden fruit, Adam and Eve, our first parents, died spiritually and began to die physically. Adam was our accurate representative. When he sinned we sinned, that is, we were blamed for his sin as if we sinned with him as our accurate representative. As a result of Adam’s sin all mankind is born spiritually dead. Spiritual death consists of two parts, guilt (a BAD RECORD), and corruption (a BAD HEART). All mankind inherits the guilt of Adam’s sin. Therefore we all come into this world with a BAD RECORD. Even if it were possible to live a perfect life one would still have the guilt of Adam’s sin on his record to condemn him. We also inherit a BAD HEART from Adam. We come into this world as God-haters. No one would ever naturally desire to know or please the true God. All of mankind would willingly choose eternal damnation rather than embrace the God of all creation. From the point of conception everyone stands under the wrath of God. And although everyone has a sense of right and wrong as a result of man being made in God’s image, no one is able to live up to such expectations. Genesis 2:15-17, Genesis 3:1-24, Romans 5:12-21, Romans 6:23, Ephesians 2:1-3, Romans 1:26-32, Romans 2: 12-16

4.4 The Will of Man

The Freedom of the Will

We believe that the word “freedom” or “free” is a relative term. It is relative to where something was “freed from”. So when we talk about the will of man, it is always helpful to ask: from what or whom does the will of man freed from? In this way we can be consistent with how the scriptures use the terms “free” and “freedom”. With regards to the state of man as a whole, including his will, after the fall, the language of scriptures is not of freedom but of slavery and bondage. However, God offers freedom from the bondage of sin and death. So we prefer only to use terms or phrases that is consistent with the language of scriptures. We may say that the will of man was freed from such and such or in bondage to such and such. We believe that to use the term “free will”, is to bring with it all its philosophical baggage, that most of the time is forced into the scriptures. To avoid that and other unnecessary tautology, we prefer to use the following terms; voluntary will, creaturely will or mutable will. That is more descriptive and clear.

The Will in General

All men have been created with a will that is able to make real and liable choices. They are able to and must always choose the greatest inclination or desire at a given moment, that is consistent with their natural capacities. By “natural capacities”, we mean physical capacities as oppose to “moral” or “spiritual” capacities. God never forces men to do anything against their will, yet he is in complete control of their will and is always ultimately decisive over their will. Genesis 1:26-27, Genesis 2:15-17, Acts 4:27-28, Romans 9:10-21, Romans 3:9-20, Ephesians 1:11

The Bondage of the Will

As a result of the Fall, man not only lost eternal life, but also his power or moral ability to choose God or to ultimately please him. This is not to say that fallen man does not have the ability to choose; he does. What we are saying is that as a result of the Fall, man is now a God-hater and his will is in bondage to his corrupt sinful nature, in other words, he is incapacitated in a moral or spiritual sense. He will on his own never choose to trust in Jesus Christ as his Savior and Lord. He will as an exercise of his voluntary choice, choose the fleeting pleasures of this world instead of having God as their greatest treasure. This is a kind of “cannot” or “inability” that still renders man responsible. Ephesians 2:1-10, John 6:44, 1 Corinthians 2:14, Romans 1:30, Romans 8:5-7

The Will of the Believer in This Life

When God saves us he causes us to want to repent of our sins and receive Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord. As a believer God makes us willing to choose that which pleases him, and gives us the power to do it. God works in such a way as to make us want what he wants without forcing us to do it. Nevertheless, in this life, the believer will never be able to live perfectly for his Lord. John 1:12-13, Romans 6:15-18, Acts 11:18, Acts 16:11-15, Ephesians 2:1-10, Galatians 5:16-18, Philippians 2:12-13

The Will of the Believer after Death

It is not until the believer dies and enters into heaven that he will be made perfectly and unchangeably free to will only what is good. He will want to do good and good alone for all eternity. Revelation 21, 22